1. What did you do in 2011 that you’d never done before? Um, well, let’s see here. I worked repeated and back-to-back 70+ hour work weeks. I helped win my company several billion dollars through four proposals. I tried new meals weekly. But that’s really about it; 2011 was the year of the paycheck, for sure.
2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year? I pretty much sucked at last year’s resolutions, which was hard for me. I usually keep tabs on them and do “progress reports” and other lame things, but I didn’t this year. I just had NO TIME. Also, when I got to the end of December? I was a little disappointed that I didn’t do better, but mostly I didn’t care.
3. Did anyone close to you give birth? It was a busy year for babies! Lots of my internet ladies gave birth this year. Lots of chubby baby cheeks for me to drool over.
4. Did anyone close to you die? We had a fortunate year this year and didn’t lose anyone.
5. What countries did you visit? Austin International Airport.
6. What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011? In 2011, I wished for more grace. Actually, to be perfectly honest, I think I held to that. If y’all even knew some of the work stuff I dealt with this year, you would TOTALLY give me a high-five. In 2012, I would like more foresight. It is really easy for me to settle for instant gratification rather than see the big picture. I’m going to work on this next year (with my four goals, Education, Money, Health, & Pride).
7. What dates from 2011 will remain etched upon your memory, and why? In March, news of my first proposal win was released. I was extremely excited. I remember every submittal date like it was yesterday, as well as the long nights prior to submitting. I remember April 26, when our entire valley was devastated with tornadoes, and the week following without power. I remember seeing Bryan onstage in July and being SO SO SO PROUD of him.
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year? It sounds really silly, as it is totally work-related .. okay, not TOTALLY .. but one of the proposals I worked on this year was for my company to be a prime contractor for the new space vehicle. I took this one proposal EXTREMELY personally (I take them ALL personally, but this one especially) because Tony still – TO THIS VERY DAY – wants to be an astronaut. I told him religiously for years that I would make sure he had a rocket to ride. And y’all: we did it.
9. What was your biggest failure? My health took a backseat in 2011, for sure. From shingles to UTIs to hell if I remember what else, my body constantly begged for my attention and I didn’t always (ever) listen. And because I am too stubborn to “be sick”, I would keep going anyway. Which, guess what? Makes you WAY sicker. Health is going to be a priority this year.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury? Well, mentioned above. Stomach stuff also. Also, I blew my knee out doing a lunge and it still bothers me. I am getting old.
11. What was the best thing you bought? Hm. You know, I have no idea. I do like my car, though. It’s nice to be able to drive around without your car getting confused about which gear it should be in.
12. Whose behavior merited celebration? You know what? My sister. This year has held a lot of changes for my sister, and she has turned out to be the most amazing adult. I mean, obviously, she’s been an adult for awhile now, but she has handled herself with such grace and compassion (compassion! FROM JENNI!) that I’ve been kind of gobsmacked by it.
13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed? 2011 has kind of been the year that has proven that people are who they are, to their core. No amount of well-wishing or hoping will change that. People will be who they are, and sometimes, you just have to wake up and see it.
14. Where did most of your money go? “Mortgage and daycare. Daycare is such a rapist.” – 2009. “SURPRISE, 2010 WAS THE SAME!” – 2010. I’m sure you’re shocked that my answer will be “SAME HERE, 2011!” I selfishly started punching my 10-key the other day to look at our finances sans kids. DON’T EVER DO THAT. YOU WILL WEEP.
15. What did you get really, really, really excited about? Oh, Austin and The Blathering. Which, WOW, what an amazing weekend with amazing people and the food! It’s really easy to be down on the trip because of the way I got home (30 HOURS IN AUSTIN AIRPORT, Y’ALL), but the rest of the weekend was so incredibly amazing. And next year? IT’S IN THE CRESCENT CITY!
16. What song will always remind you of 2011? .. the theme song from “Calliou”? I KNOW, RIGHT? It’s a lame, lame situation, but Bryan and I only know about new music when Jack asks us about it.
17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) happier or sadder?
b) thinner or fatter? (I’m stronger.)
c) richer or poorer?
18. What do you wish you’d done more of? Enjoying time off. I made a point to take a couple of days off after every submittal, but I filled them with chores. I never really know how to let myself rest, and it’s such a travesty. It’s nice to be in a clean house, and maybe I can only REST in a clean house, but .. it’s okay if I ask for help on those, right?
19. What do you wish you’d done less of? Guilt tripping myself. I spent a LOT of time at the office this year, and I cannot TELL you how many times I missed bedtime with Tony AFTER a morning where I’d left before he was awake. It started to gnaw at me as a mom, that I was rarely at home, rarely with my kid for just down time, and the little What-Ifs are just cruel, cruel hobgoblins.
20. How did you spend Christmas? Um, honestly? I spent Christmas resenting our custody situation. Like, big time. Like, it caused a horrible blow up on Christmas night. I spent Christmas according to another household’s calendar, and it will be the last time that happens. – 2010 Um, guess what? IT WAS THE SAME THING! Granted, there wasn’t the big blow-up on Christmas night, but still.
21. Did you fall in love in 2011? Every year, man.
22. What was your favorite TV program? I had the kind of year that INSISTED on mindless, useless tv when I actually had time to watch it. So I LIVED for Real Housewives of Wherever and other stupid petty stuff. Seriously, I had no time for anything that required brainpower for 3/4 of this year. Now, in the last two months, I’ve started watching Friday Night Lights and Parenthood and Breaking Bad and HOT DAMN if those aren’t great shows.
23. This question has been deleted because it’s SOOO teenage emo Xanga shit.
24. What was the best book you read? Divergent, hands down. We all poured through it and loved it. I also read Graceling while stuck in Austin and it was okay. Oh, and I’ve gotten through the first three Harry Potter books (LOVE!).
25. What was your greatest musical discovery? I’ve pretty much given up on discovering great music. I just don’t have the time or the patience with all the BAD music out there. So instead: this is the year I actually started discovering John Doyle’s staging of Sondheim musicals. (I AM LAME.)
26. What did you want and get? A new car, which pretty much trumps anything else.
27. What did you want and not get? Except an iPhone.
28. What was your favorite film of this year? Um, Bridesmaids. It’s suddenly become very gauche to say that you enjoyed that movie, because it’s “not funny” according to lame-ass hipsters, but y’all, that movie was FUCKING FANTASTIC. And I don’t drop the F-bomb often anymore. I have not laughed that hard or that much in a LONG time. I cried massive tears of laughter in the theatre. And was so so so proud that it was WOMEN being that funny. In your earhole, Jerry Lewis.
29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you? I turned 31 this year, and we managed to have a small birthday dinner at our local sushi joint with a bunch of friends and it was fun and we laughed a lot.
30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? “A 25th hour in the day.” – 2008. “Ditto.” – 2009. “Hells yes, gimme some of that.” – 2010. “WHERE IS MY HOUR, FATE?” – 2011
31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011? Layers and the ability to move. Also, FLATS. I have come to the realization that heels are no longer doable for me. It’s all TOMS and CROCs from this point out, y’all.
32. What kept you sane? Pretty much this.
33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most? I have really come to appreciate celebs that don’t take themselves too seriously. So Johnny Depp, Ryan Gosling, and any other star of a meme that can play along with it wins my heart.
34. What political issue stirred you the most? Oh, all of them. And I don’t really talk politics on here because it is your American right to believe what you believe, but I am .. disappointed in my elected administration. I think they had support of massive, epic proportions, support for HOPE and CHANGE, and .. I just am not satisfied that either of those have been delivered.
35. Who did you miss? It sounds silly, but my grandmother. She passed away in April of 2010, but I .. I know she’s with me a lot. She visits me in my dreams a lot.
36. Who was the best new person you met? I don’t know the right way to put it into words, but .. hiring back into the company that I left in 2010 was the best decision I’d ever made. And people had a chance to look at me with fresh eyes, and vice versa. And I finally felt like a worthy part of a team, you know? I wasn’t just the little girl that they watched grow up, get married, have a family .. I became an asset with a skillset that was worth fighting for. That’s a cool feeling.
37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011. Tony became unexplainably obsessed with Dr. Seuss’s Oh, The Places You’ll Go this year, and we read it every night that I was home for bedtime. The entire book is a big ole life lesson that is nice to read. Almost daily.
38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
“Witches can be right,
Giants can be good.
You decide what’s right,
You decide what’s good.
Just remember –
Someone is on your side – our side –
Someone else is not.
While we’re seeing our side,
maybe we forgot –
they are not alone.
No one is alone.”
– “No One is Alone”, Into the Woods by Stephen Sondheim